Portrait of Walther Flemming, German cytologist

Portrait of Walther Flemming, German cytologist

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Walther Flemming. Portrait of Walther Flemming (1843-1905), the German cytologist who discovered chromosomes and their role in cell division (mitosis). Flemming used newly-developed aniline dyes and improved microscopes to study nuclei in cells and found that scattered fragments in the nucleus became highly coloured. He named these fragments 'chromatin'. He found that during cell division the chromatin granules coalesced to form thread-like structures (chromosomes). He showed that during cell division, chromosomes split lengthwise and separate so that each daughter cell has as much genetic information as the original. Flemming called this process 'mitosis'.

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Keywords: cell division, chromosome, cytologist, discoverer, flemming, mitosis, pioneer, portraits, surname f, walther

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